When I was 3 years old, I figured out my self worth from what my parents thought of me. They would tell me if I had been a good boy or a bad boy.
When I was 5 and started school, I “outsourced” my self-worth to my teacher. If she gave me an “A” I knew I was special, and if she gave me a “D”, I knew that I was relatively useless.
When I turned 14, I started to outsource my self-worth to my friends. If they thought I was cool then I knew I was cool. If they called me a “loser” than I knew I was a loser.
When I turned 21 and got my first job out of university, I outsourced my self-worth to my new boss. If he gave me a good performance review or said “great job” – I knew I was worth something special. And if he gave me a lousy review or told me off, I knew I wasn’t worth much.
At 22 I started dating women and I outsourced my self worth to them. If a girl told me she loved me – I knew I was special. If I got dumped, I thought I was a loser not worthy to be around.
At 25 I had my first business and then I started to outsource my self-worth to my prospective clients. If they bought my products, I knew I was worthy. And if they said “no” to my sales pitch, I would go home and feel bad about myself.
At the age of 33, I finally decided that instead of “outsourcing” my self-worth to my parents, teachers, bosses, friends, women or clients I should be deciding my own self worth.
Who are you outsourcing your self worth to? Who decides if you should feel good about yourself or if you should feel bad about yourself? Or how cool you really are? Or how smart you are? Or if you are an attractive person?
The fact is YOU are the person that determines how YOU should feel about yourself. Not someone that rejected you. Not someone that society decided should be your boss. Not your parents. YOU are the person you should be doing things to please.
If you are outsourcing your self-worth than just be careful that you will be spending a life pleasing others – and the others are not necessarily going to be there for ever. Your teachers, parents, friends and other relationships will come in and out of your life. You will still be there.
A route to happiness you might want to consider is to stop outsourcing your self-worth and bring that decision in-house to yourself.